Mike Tomlin on officials’ review at the end of regulation: It was an embarrassment

Seattle Seahawks v Pittsburgh Steelers
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Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin was clearly livid at the officials when they stopped Sunday’s 23-20 overtime win with three seconds left in regulation to review D.K. Metcalf‘s catch.

There wasn’t much reason to question what happened during the play. Metcalf made a clear catch and clearly fumbled. Then receiver Freddie Swain recovered the ball and ran to the middle of the field for Seattle to get a spike off to give the club an opportunity for a game-tying field goal.

But when the officials halted the game to review Metcalf’s catch, it allowed for an easy spike procedure with three seconds on the clock when play resumed.

After the game, Tomlin was still clearly peeved at the way things transpired.

“I hated it. I just — I hated it,” Tomlin said in his press conference. “I could not believe that game was stopped to confirm catch/no catch in that moment. That’s all I’mma say.”

Tomlin was asked a follow-up question and repeated his line about that being all he would say. But he actually had four more words to add.

“It was an embarrassment,” Tomlin said.

The Steelers head coach may receive a letter from 345 Park Avenue about his comments. But with Pittsburgh on a bye after improving to 3-3, Tomlin may not mind having to sign his name on a check for a fine.

17 responses to “Mike Tomlin on officials’ review at the end of regulation: It was an embarrassment

  1. The whole thing was wonky, yes, so Tomlin has room to complain. The embarrassing part is how bad his offense is. An ugly W may be better than a pretty L, but at some point they have to find a way to get better.

  2. Embarrassment or no, Geno still spiked the ball with at least one second remaining. Result would have been the same no matter what.

  3. They had to go to OT to beat Geno Smith. Tomlin needs to go.

    He still hasn’t won anything that matters without Cowher’s players.

  4. There must be better judgment by the booth. by choosing to review what was clear and obvious they could’ve effected the ending of the game significantly. Pittsburgh winning is the only thing that will keep this from becoming an even bigger bleep storm. But if that had allowed an injured player to return or frankly had changed the $$$$ result this would be huge by the noise it would create all week.

  5. Made no difference at all. In real time before the review they spiked the ball with 1 second on the clock. So the review made no difference, what is he complaining about.

  6. This is a rules question. How do you fairly review during a hurry up, running clock situation? I dont think theres a good option.

  7. Honestly it seems as if some of these Refs are making it up as they go with their justification for some of these flags. The leagues competition committee really needs to take a look at this.

  8. So was Tomlin as he was out coached at half time, so was the defense that laid down in second half except for two plays. So was refs for flag when Watt tried to punch ball out but when Bush picked up fumble, Metcalf did the same thing three times NO FLAG, So was the review in NY when they pressed the stoppage button to review a catch and fumble end of game, right when it happened.

  9. @melikefootball

    Eh – the personal foul for punching was a legit flag.

    Yes – he was punching FOR the football, but he swung 3 times and on at least the first one, he missed and hit the opposing player in the chestplate. (and while it is unclear from the camera angles I say on the broadcast, I’m pretty sure the third time, he may have hit helmet.)

    Rules as written – hitting the player with a punch at all is verboten. You can’t use “I was punching for the football and missed!” as an excuse to hit the player.

    (Re: Metcalf – I watched that one closely too. The difference between the two was that he hit the football all three times cleanly. Ergo – no flag)

  10. In the two comments above ….”How do you fairly review during a hurry up, running clock situation? I don’t think there’s a good option.” and “Refs are making it up as they go with their justification for some of these flags”

    The answer in a time critical situation is … the refs should not intercede, thereby putting their thumbs on the scale. The league already has an answer for this situation — that’s what the coaches red flag is for.

  11. If Metcalf had played smart football after the catch and ran out of bounds, this is all irrelevant.

  12. None of it mattered, but it was dumb. And since when does a team get to mark and set their own ball in play? Seattle’s receiver sprinted over with the ball, set it down, the center grabbed it, the ref ran over and slapped the ball in play -LOL. No ref spotted the ball, Seattle did -never seen that before!

  13. First – that review of the catch & fumble had nothing to do with the on-field officials, that came from the booth. There’s nothing they could do about that.

    Second – Steeler fans appeared to be upset that the game clock was at 0 when the refs blew the whistle to review the play, but there clearly was 1 second left on the clock when it was spiked by Smith. The whole thing was bumbled by the NFL, but they eventually arrived at the right outcome. The Steelers are the last team that should be complaining about bad ref calls.

    Also – there’s no way the NFL is gonna allow players to repeatedly punch at the football while the ball carrier is stood up in a pile. Some doofus is gonna break a star RB’s hand doing that, for one, but clearly that’s not in the spirit of the game.

  14. SOMEBODY (that’s you NFL OWNERS ) the game is not all about the refs they hurting the game by throwings flags 4 out of every ten plays like they did in Cleveland those refs should be let go at the end of the year.

  15. Talking about embarrassment, would Tomlin know anyone on the Competition Committee who helped institute that embarrassing taunting rule?

  16. If you’re an NFL coach you have to accept the fact that the players and coaches aren’t always going to be the ones who decide the outcome of the game. It’s a game, but it’s also a business. The refs can hold a national audiences by keeping games close. That boosts ratings, and ratings are a big topic at the negotiating table. Playoff games are nationally televised, so getting the “right” teams to the playoffs is also lucrative for the league. If the league really wanted to correct everything, they could. Don’t expect that to happen any time soon.

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